Sylvie’s Dream of Counterpoise

Desultory. Defunct. Deconstruction. Debunk. Defunct. Deride. Decide. Depot Bay. Sylvie dreamt an invisible wave of counterpoise forced all mortals to wear masks covering nose and mouth. Thus individual identity, what Freud called the id, was lost, and people would have to look into one another’s eyes when speaking and could only speak truth. Those refusingContinue reading “Sylvie’s Dream of Counterpoise”

Banana Yellow Sunrise

About fell asleep waiting on doctor to comeunder beguiling wall poster of limbic system. “I’m going to give you three words, and I’ll ask for them back before we’re done.” I repeated each word after her:yellow – yellow; banana – banana; sunrise – sunrise. Then she movedfor the cuff and I rolled up my sleeveContinue reading “Banana Yellow Sunrise”


Round ears curl silver coils of sounds, across nose stands glass bridge in worm-fog, always under construction. Every sense a degree, and digression, and distraction. This is technology: rubber sneakers, cotton threads, titanium screw implants capped with fool’s gold. Then that hardened heart lumbering loose without nails full of sloth a snail’s shake ebbs &Continue reading “Cyberpunk”

Scamble and Cramble: Two Hep Cats! The Poetry Episode

A new Scamble and Cramble episode has been posted to the Comics page! And, meantime, regular readers of The Coming of the Toads may notice a new format now in the works. Please browse around and let me know what you like or not of the new template.

How to Fix a Broken Heart

It is easy to get lost in the hospital. From the main artery grow several asymmetrical wings rising to varying heights. When one of the two main artery elevators opens, the landing pad presents an unexpected reception area, depending onto which floor you alight. I had thought room 3217 afforded a view of the HopeContinue reading “How to Fix a Broken Heart”

Photograph of Providence Urgent Care Waiting Room at Noon

Waiting room Center seat Back to window Squeeze my fingers Under a bitter blanket Opposite counter Vertigo Where? Merry-go-round stops. Wall clock running backwards You seem to have crossed some divide, a distance between following expectations and surprising the reference books on shelves marked Must Remain in Reference Room: No Check Outs – For ScholarsContinue reading “Photograph of Providence Urgent Care Waiting Room at Noon”

Micro Poems with Eye Exam

Picnic Technique Moistly dripping sap pilly this juicy gusto pudding wasp crust paper crisp in cut grass. Sara Monaurally The staked sapling at the gibbet            gallowed silent squirming wail. Fit For a New Hat When you measured my head blue eyes saw yonder sea anemones in tide pools I wanted to hug you butContinue reading “Micro Poems with Eye Exam”

Ending Net Asset Value; or, Hook up, hat up, and let go: “Calling Dr. Bartleby!”

Atul Gawande is a Harvard trained surgeon who writes eloquent prose on health and illness. His New Yorker pieces “Letting Go” and “The Way We Age Now” are full of pathos, ethos, and logos on how and when to die decisions and the bedpan reality of growing old. If he continues his work combining writing,Continue reading “Ending Net Asset Value; or, Hook up, hat up, and let go: “Calling Dr. Bartleby!””

Plato, Pablo, and the Poetics of Health Care

Plato considered poets dangerous and banned them from his Republic, and Il Postino (1994) illustrates his point, yet also shows that we are all poets, all who use language – to love and berate, to tackle and persuade, to testify and exhort. The movie, from the book Burning Patience, by Antonio Skarmeta, a fiction setContinue reading “Plato, Pablo, and the Poetics of Health Care”

Crain, Denby, Dylan and the Avatar of Health Care

“Now there’s nothing wrong with technology per se, and there’s nothing wrong with fantasy, either,” Caleb Crain offers at the end of his Avatar movie review (posted both on his blog and at n+1). And there’s nothing wrong with corporations, per se, either, he might have added, for, in any case, are not many ofContinue reading “Crain, Denby, Dylan and the Avatar of Health Care”